Mumbai: In a welcome move, the NCP on Monday set up its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) cell and claimed it is the first political party in the country to take such a step. Also Read - Day After Fadnavis-Raut Meeting, Sharad Pawar Visits Maharashtra CM Uddhav | What Did They Discuss?

Maharashtra minister and state NCP chief Jayant Patil announced the formation of the cell in a function in Mumbai and appointed Priya Patil as its state unit head.

NCP Lok Sabha member Supriya Sule who was also present on the occasion said, “We felt the LGBT community needs equal rights, so we made a separate cell for them. The purpose of this cell is to solve the problems of the gay community.”

“The NCP was the first to set up Yuvati (young women) cell. Now, it has set up LGBT cell to do justice to the deprived section,” a party statement said quoting Jayant Patil.

Priya Patil said the cell will work to ensure the community members get their rights. Apart from Priya Patil, the cell will have 13 other office-bearers, the statement said.

Notably, the formation of the LGBT cell was one of the promises made by the party in their election manifesto.

“The LGBT community faces a number of problems including education and health. As promised in our election manifesto, we will continue our efforts to bring them into the mainstream. This is the first step in fulfilling our promise,” said Jayant Patil.